DVD Releases (for week of Nov. 12)

 

STARTING THIS WEEK (New releases):

Atomic Blonde
Charlize Theron and James McAvoy star in “Atomic Blonde”

“ATOMIC BLONDE”: Charlize Theron has proven herself to be game for tough screen duty before – “Mad Max: Fury Road” standing as a towering example – and she ventures into such territory again, at a fairly breathless clip, in this action tale based on a graphic novel. She plays a Cold War-era MI6 operative who gets very physical and lethal toward her enemies while trying to recover a list that would reveal the true identities of undercover agents. The true showstopper of a scene, superbly handled by stuntman-turned-director David Leitch, is a battle that unfolds up and down an apartment-building staircase. James McAvoy and Sofia Boutella (“The Mummy”) play other spies she encounters, with John Goodman and Toby Jones as her superiors … but the real star here may be Theron’s physical trainer. *** (R: AS, N, P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)



“WIND RIVER”: An FBI rookie and a tracker, played by Elizabeth Olsen and Jeremy Renner, work together to probe a murder on a reservation in writer-director Taylor Sheridan’s (“Hell or High Water”) tense and well-played melodrama. The collaboration isn’t always easy, since different parties have different agendas, and there also are tribal rules and customs to be observed – and some of the supposed good guys aren’t necessarily good. The Wyoming locations do much for the film, essentially making the atmosphere a separate character. Gil Birmingham (“Twilight”), Graham Greene and Jon Bernthal (“The Walking Dead”) also star. *** (R: AS, P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)

“UNLOCKED”: It’s a big week for female spies on home video, as Noomi Rapace – the screen’s original “Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” – plays a CIA agent who refrains from the front lines after a mission goes awry in Paris. Posing as a social worker in England, she learns terrorists are planning a biological attack, sending her back into action with a supposedly reformed thief (Orlando Bloom) as an ally. Directed by Michael Apted, who also handled one of James Bond’s missions (“The World Is Not Enough”), the picture has a familiar feel but a top-notch cast … also including Michael Douglas and John Malkovich as the heroine’s bosses, and Toni Collette as her British counterpart. *** (R: AS, P, V) (Also on Blu-ray and On Demand)

“24: LEGACY”: Though Kiefer Sutherland had moved on to “Designated Survivor,” the franchise he did much to establish continued with this Fox series, retaining many trademarks including an on-screen digital clock and a cinema-verite filming style. Corey Hawkins (“Straight Outta Compton”) plays this edition’s hero, a military veteran who works with the counterterrorism agency CTU when he’s targeted by vengeful foreign terrorists who have followed him back to his home turf. Miranda Otto also stars as a CTU veteran whose husband (Jimmy Smits) is a presidential candidate, with recent “This Is Us” Emmy winner Gerald McRaney as his father and Carlos Bernard back in his original “24” role as ex-agent turned enemy Tony Almeida. *** (Not rated: AS, P, V)

“AGATHA CHRISTIE’S POIROT: MURDER ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS”: With a new version of the classic mystery now in theaters, this excellent made-for-TV edition of the tale puts David Suchet’s much-praised portrayal of detective Hercule Poirot in the center of the investigation aboard the legendary title train. Convinced that his life is in danger, a businessman tries to hire Poirot to stop the threat – but the sleuth refuses, and the man is killed later. Poirot then takes up a probe of the passengers, with Jessica Chastain, Hugh Bonneville (“Downton Abbey”), Barbara Hershey, Toby Jones and Eileen Atkins among those playing suspects. *** (Not rated: AS, V) (Also on Blu-ray)

“MARIAH CAREY’S ALL I WANT FOR CHRISTMAS IS YOU”: One of the holiday season’s peppiest song standards is the inspiration for this animated feature, for which Carey serves as narrator and performs you-know-which-tune, along with three others (including one written specifically for the film). The story revolves around a youngster (voice of Breanna Yde) who wants a particular dog as a holiday gift, but she has to prove first that she’s up to the responsibility by tending to her uncle’s rascally canine. Henry Winkler, Lacey Chabert (who was directed by Carey in the TV movie “A Christmas Melody”), Phil Morris and Keiko Agena (“Gilmore Girls”) also are in the voice cast, on which Carey is an executive producer as well. DVD extra: “making-of” documentary, *** (G) (Also on Blu-ray)


COMING SOON (Upcoming releases):

The Hitman's Bodyguard
Ryan Reynolds stars in “The Hitman’s Bodyguard”

“THE HITMAN’S BODYGUARD” (Nov. 21): Samuel L. Jackson plays an assassin who needs a longtime nemesis (Ryan Reynolds) as his protector. (R: P, V)

“VALERIAN AND THE CITY OF A THOUSAND PLANETS” (Nov. 21): In director Luc Besson’s fantasy-adventure, a futuristic law enforcer (Dane DeHaan) tries to keep a metropolis – and the whole universe – together. (PG-13: AS, P, V)

“THE DEFIANT ONES” (Nov. 28): The Allen Hughes-directed HBO documentary miniseries traces the work, separately and together, of music-industry icons Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine. (Not rated: AS, P)

“GILMORE GIRLS: A YEAR IN THE LIFE” (Nov. 28): Changes in seasons mean changes for Lorelai and Rory (Lauren Graham, Alexis Bledel) in this sequel miniseries. (Not rated: AS, P)

“LOGAN LUCKY” (Nov. 28): Brothers (Channing Tatum, Adam Driver) break a convict (Daniel Craig) out of prison to help in their planned speedway heist. (PG-13: AS, P)

“DESPICABLE ME 3” (Dec. 5): A gone-soft Gru (voice of Steve Carell) gets his “despicable” mojo back thanks to the twin he didn’t know he had. (PG: AS)

Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin

Jay Bobbin has decades of experience covering the television and movie businesses, winning Tribune Media Services’ Crown Jewel Award in 2008 for his performance in the company. Over those many years of interviewing and writing, he has spoken with everyone from Robert De Niro and John Travolta to Paul McCartney and Tony Bennett … from Meryl Streep and Julie Andrews to Taylor Swift and Carrie Underwood.

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